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Police spend £1m on PR

PUBLISHED: 11:31 08 April 2010 | UPDATED: 17:20 30 June 2010

Communications are vital to modern policing, one of Norfolk's most senior officers said, as it emerged the force is now spending more than £1m a year on public relations.

Communications are vital to modern policing, one of Norfolk's most senior officers said, as it emerged the force is now spending more than £1m a year on public relations.

Freedom of Information activists found Britain's forces now spend more than £30m on PR, in a survey carried out for journalists' magazine Press Gazette.

They claimed less and less information is being released about crimes, while there has been an increase in positive spin.

Norfolk's PR spend has increased from £641,000 in 2004/05, to £1.12m in 2009/10. Cumbria spent just £107,000 on PR last year and most forces spent less than £500,000.

Norfolk was ranked fifth in the survey, behind the Met (£5.8m), West Yorks (£1.4m), Merseyside (£1.35m) and Essex (£1.21m).

But Norfolk police said figures quoted in the survey did not add up because there was no uniform structure for marketing communi-cations across the country.

Since September 2009, social marketing has generated £50,535 income from product sales and sponsorship, while a saving of £44,125 was made to the communications budget from deals with local companies.

Social marketing has also raised £59,356 for the Help for Heroes charity.

Deputy Chief Constable Ian Learmonth said: “Communications and public affairs play a vital role in providing the right messages in the right tone of voice to the public, the media, our partners and our own staff.”


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